EDMONTON – The Alberta-based Change and Emissions Management Corporation (CCEMC) has named 24 winners for the first round of the organization’s $35 million international Grand Challenge: Innovative Carbon Uses. The group was selected from 344 submissions from 37 countries on six continents. The announcement was made at Zero 2014: A Conference for a Low Carbon Future.
“While efforts to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions around the world are making progress, we still need to pursue other strategies that can reduce emissions as global demand for fossil fuels grows,” said CCEMC Chair Eric Newell. “We applaud the leaders behind these projects who are taking action through developing new carbon utilization technologies.”
The CCEMC launched the multi-year competition last year, with a goal to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions by fostering the development of technologies that create new carbon-based, value-added products and markets.
“The CCEMC Grand Challenge will foster the innovation and collaboration required to accelerate the development of these critical technologies and help Alberta and the world to reduce GHG emissions,” said Paul Clark, Chair of the CCEMC Grand Challenge Steering Committee.
The projects selected are from Canada (7), the United States (14) and the UK (3). Each winner receives $500,000 and access to a support team who will help them to develop their idea.
The CCEMC Grand Challenge projects are diverse and include, as examples, a fuel
cell, fertilizers, concrete, a product to treat wastewater, and one project that will create graphene – a “miracle material” that’s stronger than a diamond and conducts electricity a thousand times better than copper. They also include a variety of chemicals that are used to produce consumer goods familiar to every Canadian – like ski boots, fishing rods, and fleece jackets.
The winners of the first round of the CCEMC Grand Challenge are,
For solid products:
For chemical synthesis:
Round two of the Grand Challenge launches in September 2015 and after a second international intake, five winners will each receive $3 million. From that group, a final winner of the competition will be awarded a $10 million grant in 2018 to establish a business that annually reduces greenhouse gas by one net megaton in Alberta.
The CCEMC focuses on stimulating transformative change by funding projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help Alberta adapt to climate change. Funding for the CCEMC is sourced from Alberta’s large industrial emitters. In Alberta, large emitters have a mandatory legislated requirement to achieve specified reductions of greenhouse gases. If they’re unable to reach their target, one option is to pay a levy of $15 per tonne into the Climate Change and Emissions Management Fund. The fund is administered by the Government of Alberta and the CCEMC receives grants from the fund to support its work. The CCEMC operates arms-length of government.